"End of an Era?" SDSI Newsletter 7/27/17

Has 2017 marked the beginning of the rise of the small brand….or the end of the big brand? In the not too distant past the primary strength of the big brand was distribution. The bigger the better, after all you just poured product into the funnel, and bingo! it was available widely. By the way, this applies to many, many product categories. Its not something restricted to our world of consumer products.

But lately the larger brands have not been the motor for the economy. Instead of creating jobs, its actually reducing them. The retail clerk community is hard hit with over 80,000 jobs lost last year. The opposite side of the coin has the rise of small brands. Alibaba’s Jack Ma is predicting the rise of the small brand. He calls them the 30/30 Businesses: under 30 employees, led by a CEO under 30. That old distribution network…brick and mortar, warehouses, huge, bulky and inefficient supply chains are now viewed by many as simply mill stones, guaranteed to sink the weary swimmer. In its place lies the internet in all of its connectivity. Alibaba’s Ma sees that old hard scape distribution replaced by a platform that levels the global playing field, enabling an Alibaba vendor to deliver to a customer anywhere in the world within 72 hours…without owning a warehouse or a forklift!  By 2020!

It is indeed mind boggling, but I definitely buy into the concept that the young small businesses will be the driver of the future economy. That’s good news for SDSI, because we are a business development group focused for the most part on small businesses. Our Springboard program has helped jump start 70 companies..they have raised over $50 Million in capital and have an unbelievable 87% survival rate. Did you know there are over 34,000 people working in our space in San Diego? Most are employed by small healthy businesses. Yeah, baby, small is beautiful!